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Nancy Howe Takes the Helm as Santa Clara County Librarian



SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. — Today, Nancy Howe began her official duties as the County Librarian for Santa Clara County Library District.  She was appointed to the position by County Executive Jeffrey V. Smith, following a nationwide recruitment with candidates from around the country.  Candidates participated in interviews conducted by stakeholders, including the Library District Joint Powers Authority Board members, labor representatives and the County Executive.

“Nancy has an unwavering commitment to service excellence and passion for the transformative role of the public library in our community,” said Smith.   “Throughout her tenure she has contributed to building a highly regarded Santa Clara County Library District, a national leader in the use of innovative library technology and its stellar library collection.”
Howe has served as Acting County Librarian since April, following the retirement of former County Librarian Melinda Cervantes.  She has worked for over 17 years at the Library District, with increasing levels of responsibility, and served as Deputy County Librarian for Information Technology and Collection since 2008.
“Nancy has proven experience and skills to lead our thriving Library District,” said Lana Malloy, Santa Clara County Library District Joint Powers Authority Chair. “We look forward to continue developing new programs and services under her direction.”
“I am delighted and honored to become County Librarian,” said Howe. “The public library continues to be the heart of the community, the champion of literacy, and the space for ideas and life-long learning. Public libraries are thriving across the country, and I would like every resident of the County to be aware of the amazing and innovative services offered at our libraries.” 
Howe has been an integral part of Santa Clara County Library District growth and transformation, which includes milestones such as the digitization of information and e-book usage.  Under her direction, Santa Clara County Library is now preparing to celebrate 100 years of service in 2014.
“Santa Clara County Library District is consistently ranked one of the very best library systems in the United States, and we believe the dedicated staff is one of the reasons the District continues to be an example at the national level,” said County of Santa Clara Supervisor Liz Kniss, County Library District Joint Powers Authority Delegate.  “Nancy has played a key role on the team and will now provide comprehensive leadership.”
“As Deputy County Librarian, Nancy’s performance at the Library has been exceptional,” said County of Santa Clara Supervisor Mike Wasserman, County Library District Joint Powers Authority Delegate. “We welcome her leadership and guidance in her new role.” 
Prior to joining the Library, Howe was the Director of Planning, Fund Distribution and Community Services for United Way of Silicon Valley and an active community volunteer.  
Howe received her B.A. and her Masters in Library and Information Science from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA).  In 2011, she completed a leadership program at Harvard, and recently completed the Santa County County’s Center for Leadership Transformation (CLT) at Stanford. Nancy and her husband, John, have lived in Saratoga for 25 years and have two children.
About Santa Clara County Library
Known as one of America’s best 100 public libraries, the Santa Clara County Library District promotes knowledge, ideas, and cultural enrichment. Its collection includes 1.8 million books, videos, CDs, DVDs, audiobooks, eBooks and extensive online resources that users can access from home or work.
For eleven years, the Library has ranked as one of the best in the nation for its size by Hennen’s American Public Library Ratings, which uses 15 different benchmark measures such as collections, circulation, visits and customer service.  Also recognized as one of America’s 2011 Star Libraries by Library Journal and with more than 3.8 million visits each year, the Santa Clara County Library District is one of the most-used public resources in the region. 
The Santa Clara County Library District includes two book mobiles, an online library, seven community libraries and one branch library serving, Campbell, Cupertino, Gilroy, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Milpitas, Monte Sereno, Morgan Hill, Saratoga and the unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County. In 2011, Santa Clara County Library had 366,035 library card holders, recorded 3,341,593 visitors, and a circulation of 10,945,949 items.  Visit Santa Clara County Library online at
Media Contact: Gwendolyn Mitchell/Marina Hinestrosa, Office of Public Affairs (408) 299-5119; Nancy Howe, Santa Clara County Library (408) 293-2326 ext. 3001
Posted: September 17, 2012